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post #1 of 21 Old 08-31-2015 Thread Starter
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Exclamation Need help/advice sailing from NYC to Marthas Vineyard

My husband just finished restoring a 1980 23' Crocker Stonehorse. Her relaunch was 1 month ago and we've only really done a 3 hour sail with her. We plan to sail from Sheepshead Bay, New York to Marthas Vineyard next week (yikes!). We plan to do it in 4-5 days with stops on Long Island, Fire Island, Block Island, and Buzzards Bay. If anyone has done this trip I would appreciate any advice. We hope to make 4-5 knots and have charted a decent course but I'm sure there are many things we haven't thought of. Thanks ahead of time!
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post #2 of 21 Old 08-31-2015
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Re: Need help/advice sailing from NYC to Marthas Vineyard

That's an confident itinerary you have going on. Nothing wrong with it, but the time frame is not going to allow you much R&R along the way. You might want to spend more than a couple of hours on Block Island

Have you considered going through LI Sound and seeing the sights?

Then again, if you prefer to be underway as much as possible, then I can't fault that. Remember, current is everything and Eldridges is your best friend.

I'm assuming it's not 4-5 days round trip.

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Re: Need help/advice sailing from NYC to Marthas Vineyard

Well I have no advice to add, other than it being one of the most beautiful small boats to do it in!
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Re: Need help/advice sailing from NYC to Marthas Vineyard

Have done that trip many times as have lots of folks here. If you have any particular questions, you'll probably get plenty of feedback. Much to think about as far as planning. Going outside, it's a long stretch with few good options if anything goes wrong. If you can only make 4 knots, you may want to go through the Sound.

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Re: Need help/advice sailing from NYC to Marthas Vineyard

Thanks to all! Our boat is currently at Sheepshead Bay so given the time frame, we want to get there as quickly as possibly while still enjoying some sights which is why we decided to sail outside. For people who have done the trip going outside, any specific spots you recommend to stop for the night or a few hours? Is it better to go through Great South Bay and call for the drawbridge or will that take too much time? Our goal is to leave NY early Monday morning and hopefully get to MV by Friday afternoon (yes 5 days one way).
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Re: Need help/advice sailing from NYC to Marthas Vineyard

Very ambitious sail. Are you certain that the outside route is actually that much faster? If you time your trip properly with the tidal current, a sail up the East River and through the Hell gate will get a tremendous boost in speed. Similarly at the East End you can get a big push from the current. Of course, if you time it wrong the current is a problem. Given that you are pretty close to Narrows at the start of that trip, I would consider the Sound. If unforeseen problems arise, the route through the Sound gives you many more options.
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post #7 of 21 Old 08-31-2015
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Re: Need help/advice sailing from NYC to Marthas Vineyard

Hey,

From Sheepshead bay I would definitely go up the east river and then through the sound.

If you go in the ocean there are VERY few places too stop. It can be difficult to get into great south bay and then you need to be back into the ocean to continue past Montauk.

In the sound there are LOTS of harbors to stop on, on both sides. There wont be big waves (unless the wind is from the east).

Good luck,
Barry

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Re: Need help/advice sailing from NYC to Marthas Vineyard

All of the south shore of LI inlets (Shinnecock, Fire Island, Jones etc) are pretty tricky and potentially dangerous if you hit them at the wrong tide. Local knowledge is strongly advised before tackling any of these inlets. Your first "safe" harbor will be Montauk harbor which is about 120 miles or so, or perhaps 2 full days (and nights) sailing, if sailing east on the outside. You don't have to take my word on this either as you can download coastal pilot #2 which covers these inlets:
http://www.nauticalcharts.noaa.gov/nsd/cpdownload.htm

I am not saying "it can't be done". I am saying that for my first time making a trip like this I would prefer going through the LI Sound where safe anchorages are abundant. The trip up the East River is a blast when the current is with you.

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Re: Need help/advice sailing from NYC to Marthas Vineyard

The sound has some of the most delightful sailing around. September is a beautiful time, cooler weather, nice breeze, deep water, and lots of places to take a break.
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Re: Need help/advice sailing from NYC to Marthas Vineyard

From Sheepshead Bay, you're not going to lose any time by taking the inside route. On the plus side, you'll have dozens of options on both sides of LIS for protected harbors, mooring fields and anchorages to choose from. Few options going on the outside, and some of those can be tricky depending on the tide (and weather). Going inside also gives you access to plenty of support services and shelter should things not go as planned. Have you and your husband done a trip of this duration before?

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